So, .... tap tap tap ... "Begin."
About 6 weeks ago, my son and his wife called to say they were coming for a short overnight visit. Kristin had just returned from her mission trip to Scotland -- the land of my husband's forefathers -- and she had brought home some special gifts to us. Our favors included wonderful Scottish candy, shortbread cookies, a book on the origins of the MacLennan clan and their place in Scotland's history, and a wonderful tartan plaid throw from the Lamont side. Yes, like I said, my husband is Scottish through and through.
Kristin then opened her laptop and began showing us pictures of her recent trip. She moved through them so swiftly, I thought, "She must have hundreds of them to be going so fast." I particularly remember the number of churches and steeples she was showing us. And then about the 20th picture in, this frame popped up.
You could have knocked me over with a feather. I don't think I've ever been more shocked in my life. On more than one occasion when our married children have called us to meet them or just shown up with their spouses, I've thought, "I wonder if they've got some 'news' for us." But this time it had not even crossed my mind. Not once. And so here I stood looking at a picture of my first grandbaby; and let me just go on record as saying, I was smitten. Enamored. Besotted. Captivated. Crazy about. Completely undone by that raspberry size fetus growing within the confines of its mother's womb. That little thing that already had lips and a nose and eyelids. Legs and arms. A heart beat that was pumping fast and a brain that was developing at rapid speed. Yes, this was nothing short of our baby, a seed from God planted in the earth. And you can bet that before they left the next evening, I had placed my hands on that only slightly protruding belly and blessed that precious little thing growing inside of its mother.
Smitten. I'd never used that word before and suddenly it became everything to me. When I would tell someone, "I'm going to be a grandmother!" it was only natural for me to add, "And I'm already so smitten." And I am. Absolutely captivated by this new love in my life. One that I can hardly wait to meet face to face and cradle in my arms.
Up until now, the word "smite" has held negative connotations. We think of God smiting the enemy. Or as Webster's dictionary uses it: "His sword has smitten thousands." And I was actually beginning to wonder if I were using the word correctly. And then I read a passage from Leonard Sweet and Frank Viola's book entitled Jesus Manifesto that caused me to think differently. It read, "The need today is for the scales to fall from our eyes so that we may see the infinite greatness of our Lord ... This, of course, necessitates that those who have been smitten by Christ themselves impart that same sterling vision of Him to others."
Six weeks after learning the news, I'm still telling people, "I'm going to be a grandmother!" That news is not fading; it's not becoming old to me. My enthusiasm is only growing with the baby's development. And I have a feeling when the next one becomes pregnant, the news will be just as fresh and just as exciting -- and probably even more so as then I will know the full extent of the joy.
But here lies the conviction: "those who have been smitten by Christ..." Sweet and Viola go on to say, "Once our eyes are opened to see the incredible richness and captivating beauty of Jesus, either our other pursuits will take a backseat, or we will discover them anew and afresh 'in the light of His glory and grace.' Like Paul, we will be 'apprehended; -- ambushed and arrested by Christ."
Yes, I have been "ambushed" and "arrested" lately by our Little Hoot. But nothing should or can compare to the "spellbinding apprehension" that is ours when the Divine places His Seed in us and the mystery of the Gospel is revealed in us. Even becoming a grandmother should pale.
Just an ordinary moment...